People get frustrated all the time when we let players walk as free agents or we don't make big splashes in free agency each year. With the extra cap space we are sitting on, people are complaining and calling the team cheap. The Pats aren't cheap, they're smart. They are fair with money. They offered Ty Law a ton of money. The Chiefs offered just a little bit more. We didn't win Super Bowls by out-bidding every team for every player. If Dan Snyder was an average joe, he would be in credit card debt. That's not the Patriots style. They would make sacrifices but still live comfortably. It's just plain wrong that people think we don't try. We went after players in free agency and some signed elsewhere. Guess what? Every team in the NFL went after players with some signing elsewhere. The Patriots can't get every player they go after. I think some people figure that every free agent is dying to come here and the only holdup is money. It's not that simple. It's real easy to say, "Hey, we have all this money, why not just give it to Branch and get him in camp?" Branch and his agent want him to get paid as an elite WR. The problem is that he is not an elite WR, he is just a very good one. "But we have the cap space, why not just budge a little and overspend?" After this season, assuming that Branch has been re-signed already, Koppen, Samuel and Graham will become free agents. What do we do if Koppen wants the largest contract for an OL in history, Samuel wants a contract that rivals Ronde Barber and Graham wants more money than Vernon Davis? Maybe we still have enough space and get the deals done. Then after the 2007 season, Wilson wants the same amount that Roy Williams just got. Ty Warren, with one year remaining on his contract, desides to hold out unless we pay him as much as Richard Seymour. Suddenly, we don't have all that money. Even with an increased salary cap, we're out of money. Fiscal responsibility is what has kept us competitive. We pay players fairly, we just don't get stupid. That's the reason we have so much cap space. The fact that we have money left over doesn't mean we didn't try to spend some of it. The fact that we didn't sign Ty Law doesn't mean we should give $5 million a year to someone else just because we have it. A guy goes to a Dodge dealership with $100,000 cash. He wants to buy a Viper. The dealer tells him that they don't have any Vipers but shows him a nice looking Charger. The guy decides he likes it and gives the dealer all $100,000 for it. Sounds stupid doesn't it? That's how a lot of people treat the Patriots when it comes to the salary cap. We shouldn't spend money if the value isn't there. We shouldn't give Branch a ridiculous contract just because we can afford it. (this season) We don't have $12 million left over because of being cheap. We have that money because we didn't buy a Charger for what a Viper is worth.